The University of Iowa Libraries has acquired a significant collection of pulp magazines, fanzines, and science fiction books owned by the late James L. “Rusty” Hevelin. The collection encompasses nearly one hundred years of material, documenting in great detail the development of science fiction, popular culture, and participatory fan culture in the United States during the twentieth century.
Rusty Hevelin began collecting pulp magazines in the 1930s when they were a popular item on newsstands. Pulps were cheaply produced weekly fiction magazines. They were the training ground for many of the most famous science fiction writers like Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, and Edgar Rice Burroughs. The collection contains thousands of pulps, ranging from the early Thrilling Wonder Stories, the eclectic Weird Tales, character titles such as The Shadow, The Spider, and Doc Savage, and many examples of mystery, western, and aviation pulps. “This vast collection of material rarely collected by traditional libraries is a goldmine for teachers and scholars,” said Corey Creekmur, UI Associate Professor of English and Film Studies. “Pulp magazines were central to mid- 20th century American popular culture, but their ephemerality has made them rare and inaccessible for later readers. The arrival of this collection makes Iowa a major archive for future research in this area.”
The University of Iowa Libraries is home to internationally significant science fiction collections. Holdings include the Horvat Collection of Science Fiction Fanzines, the Ming Wathne Fanzine Archive Collection, and a growing body of materials resulting from the Fan Culture Preservation Project, a partnership with the Organization for Transformative Works.
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